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Session 7 : Linking Trade and Business Registers


STATISTICS DIRECTORATE International Trade and Globalisation Statistics Section (TAGS) ... 500/1000/All enterprises/establishments and ISIC section, by flow ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Session 7 : Linking Trade and Business Registers

Session 7 Linking Trade and Business Registers
Progress Report OECD Structural Business
Statistics Expert Meeting, 2007
  • Introduction
  • The present situation
  • The 1st Meeting of the Steering Group in Ottawa,
    June 2006
  • Terms of reference, name
  • Outcomes
  • Proposed standard list of indicators
  • Methodological work
  • The road ahead

  • Global economies require data on who is trading
    and what are the characteristics of trade
  • This question requires establishing a direct
    relation between foreign trade and industrial
  • But these two statistical domains are based upon
    different concepts (products versus economic
    activities) and use different classifications
    (SITC, HS, ISIC, CPC).

  • Central issue of such an analysis is to try to
    classify trade operators according to enterprise
  • But this depends on the possibility of using or
    developing common identifiers between the trade
    register and the business register
  • Countries largely differ in their ability to
    perform such a linking.

Point of departure
  • EU Member States have made significant progress
    in this domain through feasibility studies and
    the development of target indicators,
    co-ordinated by Eurostat
  • OECD issued a pilot questionnaire in 2005 to
    gather views from Non-EU OECD countries to
    evaluate whether or not a similar approach could
    be envisaged.
  • Good result of the OECD pilot questionnaire, to
    which 8 out of 11 countries replied, and where
    several countries flagged their interest of going
    further with OECD
  • At the 6th ITS Expert meeting in September 2005,
    country delegates asked the Secretariat to pursue
    this matter with some countries willing to work
    together with OECD on this matter. The idea of a
    Steering Group to guide this process had been put
    forward and was accepted.

The present situation
  • The situation in Non-EU countries of OECD can
    be summarized as follows
  • Do they hold a register of traders? Six out of
    eight countries reported having a trade register,
    which takes the form of a database. Only 1
    country reported having a formal trade register
  • What sources of data do they use to update the
    register of traders? Customs declarations provide
    the basis. In half of the responses there is a
    link to the Business Register and data from
    fiscal authorities is used as well

The present situation (contd)
  • Which is/are the unit(s) of reference in the
    trade register(s)? Enterprises and establishments
    constitute together with legal units the
    reference units used.
  • Is there at least one common unit of reference
    between the business register and customs
    forms/register? All countries, except one,
    reported yes.
  • Is the basic statistical unit of the business
    register linked/Can the basic statistical unit of
    the business register be linked to customs forms/
    register of traders? Almost all countries can
    link the basic statistical unit to customs
    forms/trade registers

The present situation (contd)
  • Is the business register linked/can the business
    register technically be linked to customs
    forms/the register of traders?
  • The situation reported was a mix of different
    identification means, such as the tax
    registration number, name of the company and its
    address, the Business Register identification
    code. Although linkages do well exist, different
    reporting systems in countries inhibit to some
    extend linking. The risk of double-counting is
    acknowledged and the problematic measurement of
    multi-nationals was highlighted.

The present situation (contd)
  • Are customs forms/trade registers traders (if
    applicable)/ can customs forms/registers of
    traders (if applicable) technically be linked to
    the business register?
  • A mixed picture emerges as to countries ability
    to link from customs to business registers. Some
    countries reported direct links through a shared
    Business Register identification code with
    customs declarations, others reported technical
    problems, such as double counting, or no possible
    linkages. This area clearly is key for further
    development and need to be pursued.
  • Has the country carried out any statistical
    matching exercise(s) between the trade
    register(s) and the business register?
  • Only three countries reported to have done so
    this reinforces the statement made above that
    this should be pursued as a development goal. .

The 1st Meeting of the Steering Group in Ottawa,
June 2006
Terms of Reference
  • This group will focus on linking both trade
    registers and business registers and hence,
    brings together experts from both constituencies.
    There will be no sub-groups.
  • The Steering Group will concentrate on data and
  • One annual meeting, in between the OECD ITS and
    SBSNet meetings. A rotating meeting place amongst
    core group members is desirable
  • OECD invites OECD Asia (Japan, Korea) and OECD
    Oceania (Australia, New Zealand) to participate

Terms of Reference (contd)
  • On an as needed basis, Roundtable Group experts
    will be informed/consulted and can be invited to
    Steering Group meetings. This modus operandi can
    also apply to other specialist groups.
  • The Steering Group will aim at
  • collecting and standardising indicators across
  • improving the international comparability of
    concepts and definitions
  • elaborating a manual
  • Progress reports will be presented to ITS,
    SBSNet, CIBE, CSTAT, UNSC, CES, WPSME and other
    international meetings and to national
    authorities (NSOs)

Terms of Reference (contd)
  • OECD will set up an EDG to this effect (NB this
    has been done)
  • The Mandate of this Group should be endorsed by
    CSTAT and UNSC
  • The name of the group is Business Economic
    Statistics and Trade (BEST) Steering Group
  • The Secretariat is OECD

  • After a detailed review of Eurostats linkage
    exercise and the result of the OECD pilot
    questionnaire on linking SBS with Trade, the
    Steering Group agreed on the following
  • OECD to set up an Electronic Discussion Group,
    called B.E.S.T. Steering Group, and to
    propose initial structure (N.B. this has been
  • All members should feed material and background
    documentations into the EDG (stocktaking
  • The Steering Group will issue a Manual and
    members will take responsibility for
    individual chapters
  • Progress made will be reported to he above
    constituencies and other media

Outcomes (contd)
  • As acceptable threshold, 97 of the total trade
    value can be considered as starting point (as in
    the EU)
  • Both enterprise and establishment are accepted as
    statistical unit the detailed characteristics of
    basic units is to be duly documented.
  • The group agreed on the growing political
    relevance of shedding more light on the
    characteristics of traders vis-à-vis non-traders.
    Linkages to globalisation analysis, I-O analysis,
    performance and location of exporters of
    exporters were recognized.
  • Recommendations on the re-design/improvement of
    trade registers could be a significant output of
    this group

Outcomes (contd)
  • The data collected could be a goldmine for
    micro analysis
  • The OECD would be the place for storing an
    OECD-wide international database on Trade and
    Production micro-level data. Participating
    countries (NSOs) would have privileged access and
    be in control of level of detail (the modalities
    of such an undertaking are still to be worked out
    in detail)
  • The next meeting of the Steering Group is
    scheduled to take place end 2007.

Proposed standard list of indicators
  • Matching rates Trade Register and Business
    Register This table should provide a yardstick
    for a global assessment of how well both
    registers match or not.
  • Number of enterprises by economic sector (ISIC)
    and employment size class (0-9, 10-49,50-249,
    250 ), by flow
  • Trade (1000 US) by economic sector (ISIC) and
    employment size class (0-9, 10-49,50-249, 250 ),
    by flow
  • Concentration of trade value (1000 US) by top
    5/10/20/50/100/500/1000/All enterprises/establishm
    ents and ISIC section, by flow
  • No of enterprises/establishments trade by ISIC
    section, partner country, and zones ( and,
    possibly, sub-national regions on a trial basis),
    by flow
  • Value of trade (1000 US) by ISIC section,
    partner country, and zones ( and, possibly,
    sub-national regions on a trial basis), by flow

Proposed standard list of indicators (contd)
  • Number of enterprises/establishments by number of
    partner countries and ISIC section, by flow
  • Trade by number of partner countries, by flow
  • Value of trade by number of partner countries and
    ISIC section, by flow
  • Value of trade (1000 US) by number of partner
    countries and ISIC section, by flow
  • Value of trade by CPC (2-digits) and economic
    activity (ISIC section), by flow

Methodological work
  • Concerning Non-EU countries of OECD, the process
    has been put into motion to elaborate the
    required indicators. A considerable number of
    methodological considerations and drawbacks have
    to be taken into account given the very different
    statistical systems in place in these countries.
    Therefore, the EDG B.E.S.T. will play a key role
    in enabling OECD and member countries to compile
    a methodological recommendations manual.
  • Differences in the global trade collection
    systems (e.g. special versus general trade,
    different valuation practices) need to be
    considered. The scope of sectoral coverage will
    in general - cover all ISIC Sections, except P.
  • As to the actors, all economically active
    enterprises and establishments and their local
    and legal units are in scope. Given the diversity
    of national practices, recommendations to better
    harmonise the treatment of statistical units
    across countries would be one of the important
    outputs of this group.

Methodological work (contd)
  • Concerning multinationals, OECD is in the process
    of formulating recommendations as part of the
    globalisation work. The Steering Group should
    also pay attention to this aspect of
    international trade.
  • Besides ISIC, the CPC (Central Product
    Classification) which is a kind of world-wide
    equivalent to Eurostats CPA, will be considered
    for possible scope of inclusion in this exercise.
  • With respect to employment size-classes, OECD
    recommends the classes 0-9, 10-49,50-249, 250
    with persons engaged as variable. There is, thus,
    a slight difference to number of employees.
    Head count is preferred to full-time equivalents.

The road ahead
  • The process of building up a new database on
    trade by enterprise characteristics has been put
    into motion now with the establishment of the
    Steering Group, its terms of reference and the
    next steps identified and agreed upon.
  • OECD has created the Electronic Discussion Group
    B.E.S.T. to provide a one-stop-address for this
    work for collaborating countries. Both countries
    and OECD can now provide inputs this is the
    immediate task for preparing the next meeting.
    The EDG has the following categories for input
  • Meetings (meeting documents and reports of
  • Methodologies (this category is pre-condition for
    the next category, the manual)
  • Recommendations manual ( it is the ambition of
    the group to elaborate a manual, suitable for
    Non-EU countries of OECD)
  • Globalisation (this category re-groups issues
    from the globalisation context which impact on
    the work of this group. For instance, intra-firm
    trade and multinationals)
  • Data and Indicators (this category is intended to
    assemble the basic data and indicators which have
    been compiled through this work)

The road ahead (contd)
  • As a first step, methodologies need to be
    assembled on the EDG and compared as to their
    compatibility, suitability and degree of
    convergence with EU methods. This is a very
    important precondition for successfully tackling
    the next steps. The exact modus operandi and
    methodologies used in Business Registers and
    Trade Registers needs to be compiled, compared
    and analysed. It can be expected that the opinion
    of other expert groups, such as the Business
    Register Roundtable Group, will be needed. Since
    OECD participates in the Steering Group of the
    Roundtable Group, a bridging and facilitating
    role of OECD can be safely assumed. Register
    linking, matching rates and statistical units are
    part of this fundamental work.
  • Step-by-step, cleared concepts and definitions
    should be compiled in a pilot recommendations
    manual for adoption by countries. It seems
    advisable to make the recommendations
    sufficiently broad so that they can be also
    applied by other countries, for instance the Big
    5 Non-Member countries of OECD

The road ahead (contd)
  • The list of standard tables for the data to be
    compiled has been established in close
    co-operation with Eurostat. Completing these
    tables should be the main objective of compiling
    countries. Due attention has to be paid to not
    disclosing accidentally confidential data.
  • A periodic review is planned to ensure that the
    project remains on track and is providing
    pertinent results.

Proposed standard data collection tables (compact
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Delegates are invited to
  1. Comment on the project and-eventually- to voice
    interest in participation.
  2. Comment on the initial list of proposed
  3. Report on similar projects in their country and
    the possible scope for synergies with OECD

Thank you for your attention.
  • Contacts
  • Andreas Lindner
  • Florian Eberth